Universal Access To All Knowledge
Home Donate | Store | Blog | FAQ | Jobs | Volunteer Positions | Contact | Bios | Forums | Projects | Terms, Privacy, & Copyright
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload

Reply to this post | Go Back
View Post [edit]

Poster: AltheaRose Date: Jun 3, 2011 11:46pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Historical TDIH

Can't let the day go by (though it already has where I am) by marking the first show back after the hiatus!

Neat that it kicked off with Might as Well. It’s interesting to hear this Dancin and Samson after listening to a bunch of Gil Scott-Heron and going off on funk/jazz tangents from the mid 70s this week. I’ve definitely always thought of this sound as Disco Dead, but probably that wasn’t quite fair. Other music from the time puts it in context interestingly. (Can’t blame them; think of what else was in the air then. “Frampton Comes Alive!,” anyone?)

Apparently a bunch of first performances: Might as Well, Samson and Delilah, Supplication, Lazy Lightning and the Wheel.

http://www.archive.org/details/gd1976-06-03.mtx.seamons.91912.sbeok.shnf

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: light into ashes Date: Jun 5, 2011 2:09pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

I think '76 is a mixed year - often sluggish, but sometimes, as Jim F pointed out, they could play quite speedily when they wanted to.
And the 'jazzy fluidity' still sneaks into some of those sets, like in some July & September shows in particular.
And Jerry has a very sweet sound that's unique to this year. I suspect one reason the band was so 'unhurried' a lot of the time was not due to two drummers, but because that's what Jerry felt like - compare with the super-slowed-down JGB shows from 1976!
I also like that there's still some of that 1974 feeling in the jams. Gone by '77.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Jim F Date: Jun 5, 2011 1:42am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

I've always been of the opinion that the whole "76 sluggishness" thing is an exaggeration. It's both true and false. Playin' can be a good example of it being true, and the earliest Help>Slip>Franklin's were rather slow. But think about tunes like Eyes, which became lightning fast in 76, as did Let it Grow, which was sometimes played a little TOO fast. And while it's the most prime example of Disco Dead next to Shakedown Street, the reworked take on Dancin' has a pretty speedy tempo to it. It almost goes back to a 1967 feel when compared to the versions of 1970 and such.

Either way I absolutely love 1976. June is one of my favorite times of year for GD listening, it begins with a month where one can regularly revisit TDIH shows from both 1974 and 1976, which can be somewhat jarring in a sense but at the same time there are a lot of moments where you really hear a band with one foot in 1974/75 and the other in 1976/77. Reminds me of that great review in Deadbase about 12/31/76, and how the Samson wasn't 12/31/76, but 1/1/77. That's something that would only make sense to a Deadhead.

This post was modified by Jim F on 2011-06-05 08:42:27

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: bkidwell Date: Jun 4, 2011 2:11am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

The summer 76 shows are another one of those very distinctive moments in GD history, where the intercombination of stylistic and tonal elements produce a distinctive gestalt - there is some unique 'flavor' to shows of this tour. The post-retirement Grateful Dead really were a whole new band, more or less, in terms of both material and sound.

I think this show clearly shows the musical challenge that the Dead would grapple with for the rest of their career, the loss of rhythmic fluidity caused by the change from one drummer to two. To be completely honest, to my ears the music at moments has acquired a certain ponderous feeling that seems to be the result of slower tempos, the heavier sound of two drum kits, and Kreutzmann simplifying his playing greatly.

Not all the change is for the worse - the post-retirement band would find ways to make the double drums work as an advantage with hypnotic grooves like Fire on the Mountain and a return of a more powerful and driving rock and roll sound in the songs that could make use of it. In the June 3 show, the set 1 closing Dancin and the set 2 opening Samson uses the kind of rolling, percussion driven groove that contrasts strongly with anything heard during the solo Billy years.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: skuzzlebutt Date: Jun 4, 2011 6:30am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

"The post-retirement Grateful Dead really were a whole new band, more or less, in terms of both material and sound."

Absolutely. Although the summer of '76 had its moments ("Eyes" on 6/9, the Orpheum run a month later), overall the music from this period is more that of a new group still very unsure of itself than of a veteran touring band just shaking off some rust. "Ponderous" is a good description; at times some songs seem to take on a creaky, almost lumbering quality (the PITBs from this period sound especially tentative and awkward). Although they began to flex some muscle in the fall, it really wasn't until the spring of '77 that they seemed to start fully harnessing the power of the re-integrated second drummer while still occasionally channeling some of the old agility. But you're right about the easily accessed fluidity of the single-drummer years being gone for good.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Jun 4, 2011 7:38am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

I am one of those that savors the "unique flavor" of this period . Some of it is a little "ponderous" , but the 'take it slow' approach, gives these shows a relaxed warm feel . Does give new meaning to "The spirt of 76".

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: ringolevio Date: Jun 4, 2011 6:22am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

I listened to this yesterday, I think that Dancin' is just awful, I had to turn it off.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: AltheaRose Date: Jun 4, 2011 7:44am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

That is so funny, Ringo. I put it on a little while ago (a few weeks ago?) and did exactly the same thing. I just could not listen to that Dancin! Really, though, it was interesting to go back to it after hearing a bunch of mid 70s funk/jazz; for me, it changed how I heard it. But yeah, particularly if you've been listening to a lot of early Dancins, you'll want to hit them over the head for it.

Don't let it discourage you from the rest of the show, though, especially from Crazy Fingers on. I particularly like the LiG; Phil sounds so into it. And Donna is just gorgeous throughout. Being both historically minded and rather sentimental, I like to think they all sound happy to be back, the crowd sounds happy to be there ... happy happy all around :-)

Of course lowercase bk is so right about the drums sounding a bit "ponderous" when it's not just uppercase BK. I like the slowness and vibe of '76, but the jazzy fluidity isn't there. Never thought of the slowness being related to the two-drum thing being new again. It's so great to get a musician's insight.




This post was modified by AltheaRose on 2011-06-04 14:44:53

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: ringolevio Date: Jun 4, 2011 8:34am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

yeah, the two-drum ponderousness I think is the right insight.

I did listen to the rest of the show, happy happy :) it was just the Dancin' - I kept trying to force myself through it but finally had to say, "No, there is no good reason to listen to this." The Dead cause me so much happiness ... on the rare occasion they are causing pain there is no reason not to just turn it off ...

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: leftwinger57 Date: Jun 4, 2011 9:34am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

I find it pretty interesting in band dynamics that some need or want 2 drummers and multiple keyboard players. The
Dead, Charlie Daniels Band ,The Allman Bros.and others that escape me.For multi keyboard bands you have many w/ again the Dead,The Band, E Steet band and again I'm shure but many more . My point back to the drumming stand is that you have Charlie Watts on a small kit just ripping up the bottom.I must say the same for Max Weinberg.Then when it comes to power drummers w/ the likes of Ginge Baker and Keith Moon there is certainly no need for dueling drummers As for multi keyboards to me nothing is better than that swirling phasing LESLIE speaker from a B-3 W/the interplay of the grand piano. I also have said as a pesonal preference I would take the true grand piano over Keith's electric Yamaha any day of the week.Oh yea I'd add Mitch Mitchell to the list of single drummers who can out dual many....

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: unclejohn52 Date: Jun 4, 2011 8:19am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

"the result of slower tempos, the heavier sound of two drum kits, and Kreutzmann simplifying his playing greatly." Ponderous is apt.

I would also attribute a change to the Godchaux's in this period - Keith got more ham-handed and less fluid, less jazzy... and Donna finally found her niche for about two years. It's like she can finally hear herself, and pulls back from rock'n'roll screaming to a nicer vocal blend. When you heard them live though, there was way too much Keith in the mix, to bad effect at least to these ears.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: AltheaRose Date: Jun 5, 2011 1:17am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

Interesting observation -- and good memory! I'm wondering if Keith was mixed too high cuz he'd been so very good, and often so central to jams, just a short time before. Habit in mixing? I guess someone should have listened more carefully, but maybe they kept expecting great things and nobody thought it would be all downhill. Would you date his decline from '76?

Great reminder that what was heard in the halls wasn't a CM remaster!

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: light into ashes Date: Jun 5, 2011 3:51pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

There are a number of AUD tapes from '74 or '76 where Keith is pretty high in the mix, so somebody must have considered him one of the "lead" players in the Dead. I think there are other audience comments even from '73 that the piano was very prominent in the sound. It certainly would've made it easier for the audience to tell when he wasn't doing much...and when he was.
I think '77 is when Keith kind of fades out within the Dead. He was still more in his element in the '76 jams, and some of the Blues for Allah songs....the Terrapin Station material/style seems to have knocked him out a bit. (Well, assuming other things weren't knocking him out too...)

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: N Hoey Date: Jun 4, 2011 10:13pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

My first show was Colt Park Hartford 8/2/76. Having been fully into the albums and not really having collected current show tapes, seeing the '76 band was kinda disillusioning. On one hand the playing was impressive to a live show newbie, but the slower tempos and softer guitar sounds took some re-calibrating. This was not Live Dead, Bears Choice or Skull and Roses or Europe '72. Truth be told.I would never really adjust to the custom guitar sounds, the controlled reserved tempos or the fatter heavier drum sound. They sounded GREAT to me playing Gibsons, The lean sharp snappy drums of '69-'70 had the perfect edge as far as I was concerned. For some reason what were supposed to be technical improvements over the course of the '70s didn't strike me that way at all. Funny, at the time punk rock was exploding and they didn't give a shit about technical improvements.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: William Tell Date: Jun 5, 2011 9:27am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

This is something I've written here many times; so, great minds think alike...you just said it in about 10,000-9,999 posts relative to mine.

;)

Seriously.

JOTS never understands this was exactly my experience starting in 74.

Reply to this post
Reply [edit]

Poster: AltheaRose Date: Jun 5, 2011 1:24am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Historical TDIH

Always interesting to hear "reports from the field." There aren't too many folks on this board who really go back to the mid 70s and have that perspective. And it goes to show how both personal taste and album/tape exposure impacts our opinions/expectations. I don't care for synth sounds (particularly in the GD context), and consequently never fully adjusted to that aspect of Brent's work (even though I only saw a handful of Keith shows and did/do enjoy a lot of Brent era ... I mean, it's not ALL Toys R Us!). Different strokes for different ears :-)